Direct financial assistance to those who suffered damage to their properties in the massive July 3 blaze will begin being dispensed as of next week, Agriculture Minister Costas Kadis said.

He was speaking to media after meeting with a team of experts from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, here to provide technical advice to the government on dealing with the aftermath of the fires which burned some 55 square kilometres.

The first payments to those suffering damage to their homes as well as to farmers will start early next week.

“I therefore consider that the programme decided by the government to support the affected area is on schedule, and we shall continue monitoring its implementation, so that the locals can feel that the state stands by them,” said Kadis.

Regarding the other track – management of the post-fire situation in the affected areas – the experts from Greece will be working with local authorities in proposing works to prevent future flooding, phenomena of erosion or landslides.

These recommendations should be ready within the next 10 days, the minister said.